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Strongest Deliveryman: Episode 12

It’s all hands on deck for our deliveryman team this hour, and they need to continue to find new ways to succeed against Jung Family Foods in their ongoing turf war. Hell Joseon might be threatening to swallow them whole, but with the camaraderie and support they provide each other, they just might be able to break through and find a way to succeed.

 
EPISODE 12 RECAP

Kang-soo and Hye-ran face off in the middle of the street, and both refuse to yield to the other’s request to move aside. Hye-ran quips that the food Kang-soo delivers hardly qualifies as food before finally backing down to allow the deliverymen to pass.

She tells the rest of the Jung Family employees to return to the store to prepare for lunch, and resolves to get every single customer in the area to eat at their store.

The remaining restaurant owners curse out Hye-ran after she leaves, and the only plan they can think of is to partner with Kang-soo and hope that he can save them.

Over the phone, Kang-soo agrees to partner with another store, and we see him and the rest of the Strongest Deliveryman crew travel around the neighborhood to put up their delivery signs at several new affiliate restaurants.

Back at the Jung Family head office, Hye-ran checks the sales figures for their new stores and seems pleased with the results, but elsewhere, Kang-soo’s delivery app ensures the original restaurants still maintain a steady stream of their own customers.

At Lucky Noodles, Gong-gi arrives to pick up a delivery, but Soon-ae questions why Kang-soo and Dan-ah can’t deliver for them exclusively. Gong-gi tells her that’s not how the system works and heads out, leaving Soon-ae annoyed.

Dan-ah and Kang-soo almost collide in the street on their motorcycles, and Kang-soo uses this opportunity to invite Dan-ah out to lunch with him. Meanwhile, Ji-yoon eats at her typical lunch bench and ponders what to do with the credit card Jin-gyu gave her.

Kang-soo and Dan-ah walk together while nibbling on a quick lunch and run into Ji-yoon, who awkwardly invites them to join her. They sit together in an uncomfortable silence, and Ji-yoon ultimately decides it would be best to leave the two of them alone.

She gets up and offers her farewell to Kang-soo, and as she walks away crying to herself, it’s clear that this is more than a simple goodbye for her. She’s giving up on her one-sided crush.

At the Jung Family restaurant, Hye-ran and her new restaurant manager brainstorm on how to handle Kang-soo’s hindrance on their business, and Hye-ran tells the manager to make sure the other restaurants are frozen out within six months.

The manager heads straight for Jin-gyu’s old notebook and finds all of his ideas for counter-strategies that he came up with prior to quitting.

After work, Kang-soo sees Dan-ah off from Lucky Noodles, and she makes him promise not to follow her to cram school in the morning so he can focus on his own responsibilities as CEO.

Soon after, Sung-jae takes his leave as well, though he stops to ask Kang-soo why he hasn’t asked Hyun-soo to join them yet. Kang-soo deflects, saying he wants to give Hyun-soo more time to rest.

Meanwhile, Kang-soo’s mom closes up shop with Grandma, who is curious to know if something happened between Mom and Kang-soo the other day. Grandma suggests that Hyun-soo wants to join Kang-soo’s company, but Mom snaps back that he can never do that before quickly collecting herself to explain that he should stay with his mom.

Grandma quickly agrees, but she clearly recognizes that Mom’s outburst indicates that she’s hiding something about what happened that day.

At the bank, Hye-ran meets the bank president to talk business. She asks him about the loans that all of the other restaurants in the area took out from his bank, and tells him that since the Jung Family is now the bank’s customer, he should tie up the loose ends with those other loans.

The bank president agrees and offers to clear it up right away, and as they leave the office together, we linger on his nameplate on the desk, identifying him as Kim Jong-hyun.

Elsewhere, the neighborhood loan sharks discuss this same Kim Jong-hyun, who is apparently Soon-ae’s ex-husband, and it turns out that as soon as Soon-ae’s father died, Kim Jong-hyun framed Soon-ae for adultery and left her with nothing.

The person who helped Kim Jong-hyun frame Soon-ae, then, is the person Viper is supposed to be searching for at Chef Jang’s request. But Viper doesn’t know where this mystery man is either, and lied so that Chef Jang would fulfill his end of the bargain.

Just then, Chef Jang surprises the loan sharks out of nowhere and threatens that he’ll kill Viper himself if Viper doesn’t call him within three days. Chef Jang trudges off, leaving the loan sharks to worry about what to do.

Back at Lucky Noodles, Soon-ae pesters Kang-soo and Dan-ah to be the only two drivers from Strongest Deliveryman to deliver for their restaurant. Dan-ah lightly protests, but Kang-soo agrees to bring it up with the rest of the employees later.

When the Strongest Deliveryman crew meet, they unanimously vote to allow Soon-ae’s request, and afterward, they all tease that Kang-soo and Dan-ah should just get married while they’re at it. Kang-soo giggles to himself about it, but an annoyed Dan-ah smacks the table and warns them to shut up, and they sheepishly head back to work.

Before leaving, Kang-soo tells Dan-ah that he plans to put Jin-gyu’s photo in their group chat so the other drivers can look for him while they make deliveries. Dan-ah admits that she too is curious what happened to him, but didn’t want to bring it up in case Kang-soo would get upset.

Jin-gyu, meanwhile, continues to live on the streets and scrounges around looking for free meals and places to wash up, earning the scorn of others as he tries to get by after giving up everything he had.

During her lunch break, Ji-yoon can’t help but reminisce about Jin-gyu’s kindness toward her. On her way back, she realizes that a photographer is trying to stealthily follow her (not very successfully), and she confronts him, knowing that her dad put him up to it.

The photographer reveals that there were three teams of photographers. He followed her, and another followed Kang-soo briefly until it was apparent that he was dating Dan-ah. Ji-yoon guesses that the last one must be following Jin-gyu, and asks the photographer where Jin-gyu is now.

Outside the neighborhood restaurants, a bank official informs the restaurant owners that the bank is calling in the rest of their loans immediately, and the deadline for payment cannot be pushed back.

Soon after, Kang-soo arrives and notices the downtrodden looks on the owners’ faces, so he asks what’s wrong. The owners, though, don’t want to trouble him, and send him off without mentioning their financial troubles.

Back at Lucky Noodles, Soon-ae pulls Dan-ah aside and tells her about the tracking device she put in Chef Jang’s shoe. She asks Dan-ah to come with her if anything comes up, and Dan-ah agrees. Kang-soo arrives and asks if something is wrong, but Soon-ae denies it, again leaving him in the dark.

At the end of the day, Chef Jang hastily leaves on his own, and Kang-soo notices Soon-ae eyeing Chef Jang suspiciously. When Soon-ae leaves, Kang-soo inquires about what’s going on between Soon-ae and Chef Jang, but Dan-ah also denies there is any problem. Kang-soo clearly suspects otherwise, and they head inside for a company meeting.

Meanwhile, Jin-gyu continues to wander the streets and finds some leftover kimbap sitting on a dining table outside. He hesitantly brings the kimbap to his mouth, but Ji-yoon dramatically charges in to stop him.

She wrestles the kimbap out of his hands, and he pathetically pleads for her to leave. Instead, Ji-yoon breaks down and cries at seeing Jin-gyu in this state, crumpling into a ball of tears in front of him.

Back at the meeting, the deliverymen brainstorm advertising ideas for the app, but Soon-ae calls Dan-ah with news that Chef Jang is on the move, and asks Dan-ah to meet her at the location he is heading to. Dan-ah tells the rest of the company that she needs to leave early, lying that it’s because of Yeon-ji before heading off to follow Chef Jang.

Elsewhere, Ji-yoon treats Jin-gyu to a bowl of ramen, and Ji-yoon scarfs down her own food as quickly as Jin-gyu does. When he asks why Ji-yoon is starving too, she tells him, “There was no one to annoy me while I ate, so I had no appetite.”

She offers to treat him to whatever food he wants, and when he giggles in response, she tells him that he’s cute. Taken aback, he wonders if something happened to her, and she admits that it’s because her first love didn’t work out.

But Ji-yoon is ready to move on, she says, and wants to make her second love work out now. Jin-gyu wonders who that might be, and she stuns him by admitting that it’s him.

He asks her if she’s gone crazy, and Ji-yoon parrots back the line he used on her when she was stubbornly refusing his advances, “Yes I’m crazy… for you.” Ha, these two are adorable.

He tells her not to be so scary, but she responds that there’s something even scarier to worry about: She’ll be monitoring him 24 hours per day. She motions for him to look outside to see what she means, and there are the photographers her father hired, now forced to listen to Ji-yoon so she doesn’t get them fired.

Dan-ah heads across town looking for Chef Jang, and while she’s stopped at an intersection, some friends of Kang-soo recognize her as Kang-soo’s girlfriend. At the same time, the Strongest Deliveryman meeting concludes, and aside from Kang-soo, only Gong-gi remains behind, taking selfies with all kinds of aegyo poses for his company picture. Ha.

Kang-soo’s friends call him and inform him of where Dan-ah is, confirming that she didn’t go home because of Yeon-ji. Kang-soo leaves to chase after her, and Gong-gi follows close behind.

Chef Jang arrives at an old warehouse to find Viper and the loan sharks waiting for him. Viper claims that the man Chef Jang is looking for is tied up inside, but when they head inside and the man in question is tied with his back facing them, Chef Jang knows something is wrong.

The rest of the gangsters quickly surround Chef Jang and knock him unconscious. When he comes to, Chef Jang is the one tied to the chair, and Viper admits to lying about performing Chef Jang’s favor.

Viper tells his men to kill Chef Jang quickly, but just then, Soon-ae and Dan-ah barge into the warehouse. Chef Jang yells at them to run away, and the gangsters give chase outside, swiftly surrounding the two women.

The sound of a motorcycle horn startles everyone, and both Kang-soo and Gong-gi roll in, scattering the gangsters. Gong-gi even sends his still-moving bike at a group of them as he dives off. An all-out melee ensues, with Dan-ah joining in herself to help fight off the gangsters.

Back in the warehouse, Chef Jang convinces the loan shark to release him from the chair, and he sprints outside as Viper pulls a knife and starts to approach the fight in progress. Chef Jang quickly dispatches Viper and shouts for everyone to stop, which ends the brawl on the spot.

Viper and his gangsters all kneel to beg forgiveness from Chef Jang, who spares them under the condition that they never show up in front of him again.

Chef Jang apologizes to Soon-ae for getting involved with the gangsters, but she coldly tells him off. Soon-ae tries to get Kang-soo to take her home, but Chef Jang intercedes, and Kang-soo, Dan-ah, and Gong-gi all badger her into letting Chef Jang take her.

Gong-gi leaves as well, and, now alone together, Kang-soo scolds Dan-ah for her foolish actions. He’s absolutely furious, and storms off on foot after telling her that she’s fired, leaving her dumbstruck.

She catches up to him later and musters an apology, but he continues to walk away and ignore her. She chases him down, still pleading with him. Finally, she pulls him into a back-hug, promising to not do it again.

Kang-soo finally relents and turns around to give her a deep hug of his own before making sure she didn’t get hurt anywhere in the brawl.

When Chef Jang and Soon-ae arrive back at Lucky Noodles, he begins to tell her about what Viper promised him, but she stops him immediately. “Whatever that guy said, it’s all in the past,” she tells him, then adds, “I’ve forgotten everything. You should forget too. You forget everything else, so why do you remember the bad things?”

Chef Jang stammers another apology, but Soon-ae, sick of hearing apology after apology, brushes him off and storms off on her own.

Gong-gi, back at his home, dramatically recounts the tale of the gangster encounter for the rest of the crew. He basks in his own glory, only for them to dismissively poke fun at him. Gong-gi looks so upset when he sees their disinterested response as the Knucklehead Trio all lie down in unison to sleep when he finishes. Hahaha.

Sung-jae changes the subject by mentioning that the company should do something to welcome new recruits. Min-chan suggests they should have a company retreat, and the Knucklehead Trio immediately spring back to life to agree.

Sometime later, the company crew heads out to Min-chan’s hometown for their retreat. They all relish in the scenery of the countryside, and Kang-soo promises to help Min-chan buy all the land here so he can preserve it from being built on.

The group explores the remains of what was a firing range used by the U.S. military until the year 2000. Kang-soo wonders how Min-chan could live in a place that was essentially like a war zone, and Min-chan replies that he doesn’t know, he just lived without thinking about it like everyone else there. Wow, what a sobering story.

The group continue to explore the village together, and Kang-soo and Sung-jae reminisce about their own hometown, and their memories of growing up together as friends.

Dan-ah gets a phone call from Yeon-ji, who tries to get Dan-ah to admit that she is alone with Kang-soo, but an annoyed Dan-ah just hangs up on her. Still reeling, Yeon-ji is greeted by Ji-yoon, who is moving into the third floor of their building.

They introduce each other, and when Yeon-ji mentions that she lives on the rooftop, Ji-yoon realizes that she must live with Dan-ah. Ji-yoon asks Yeon-ji to pass along the news to Dan-ah that she’s moving in below, and Ji-yoon heads inside to get settled.

Once inside, Ji-yoon marvels at how big the space is, giggling to herself that “it’s more than enough space for two people.” Ha. She sure is planning to move fast on Jin-gyu.

Meanwhile, Jin-gyu tries to eat lunch on a park bench, only for Ji-yoon’s photographer to catch his attention and wave at him. Jin-gyu turns away to eat his lunch in peace, only to find another photographer staring at him from the other direction. Jin-gyu bemoans his lack of privacy and sighs, “I’ve been totally kidnapped.” Ha.

Back at the retreat, the group plays a bunch of games, including the Pepero game, which hilariously leads to two of our Knucklehead Trio members immediately getting up to the other’s mouth and sharing what is practically a full kiss. Hahaha.

Afterward, they realize they forgot to bring alcohol with them, so Gong-gi tells Min-chan to go buy some, which leads to them going through the full chain of command before the responsibility eventually falls on Dan-ah. She heartily agrees and rushes off to the store.

Kang-soo goes to follow after her, but the guys reveal that they actually already have alcohol, and this was all a setup so they could send Dan-ah and Kang-soo out together.

Kang-soo catches up to Dan-ah outside the store and, after revealing that they were set up, asks Dan-ah to go for a walk with him. They walk along the waterfront together, and Dan-ah affirms her belief that there’s no hope in this country for someone like her.

Kang-soo argues that there is hope — after all, even he could become CEO of a company despite coming from nothing. But Dan-ah worries that even a nice guy like Kang-soo won’t be left alone to succeed in Hell Joseon.

Kang-soo realizes that Dan-ah must still plan to leave, and tells her that no matter where she is, he just wants her to be happy, adding that he always wished that for her.

He explains how he felt when he first heard that Dan-ah delivered food for five years, knowing the unique challenges that women face in this line of work, and how the only other woman he knew who did this job quit after three days because she couldn’t handle it.

Kang-soo never experienced anything like that, and could move from place to place without worrying about those things, but any time Dan-ah wanted to do the same, she’d have to experience those hardships again.

Kang-soo tells Dan-ah that his heart ached for her when he thought about that, and all Dan-ah can do is struggle to fight back tears. He grabs her hand and ask earnestly “Can’t I make you happy? Can you not leave? If a person like me can succeed, you don’t have to leave. You could be happy here too.”

Tears now falling down her face, Dan-ah says she doesn’t know, and Kang-soo pulls her into a hug. He implores her one more time, “Don’t go. Stay here. I’ll try. I’ll try to make you happy.”

Dan-ah sobs in response, so Kang-soo pulls back, and they stare into each other’s eyes for a moment before he leans in slowly and pulls Dan-ah into a soft, tender kiss.

 
COMMENTS

These two are a cute couple, and Kang-soo is doing his best to break through Dan-ah’s shell with every morsel of his being, but she’s pretty tough to crack. Dan-ah put herself in this position, though, when she decided to date Kang-soo for her remaining days while thinking that she could cut the cord without looking back. Now she’s stuck between two mutually exclusive options: 1) leave Korea as she planned in search of a better life elsewhere, but leave Kang-soo behind, or 2) stay and be with the man she is completely head over heels for, no matter how much she denies it, but be stuck in the Hell Joseon she spent her life trying so diligently to flee.

While I think Kang-soo’s optimism is more of a constant character trait for him than something that ebbs and flows depending on the circumstances, I think he is being a little bit shortsighted when it comes to convincing Dan-ah that the Hell Joseon she is trying to escape from is something that can be overcome without needing to flee. Sure, he did become CEO of his own company, but it’s not as if he is suddenly running a wealthy conglomerate. Dan-ah is trying to escape from a system that keeps the less fortunate down and allows the rich to get richer, and Kang-soo’s success, while promising, doesn’t exactly disprove the notion that Hell Joseon is still acting to maintain this status quo in society.

Even as Kang-soo succeeds, we still see the other less fortunate members of society being taken advantage of by the larger firms, paving the way for the Jung Family to take over the area, and the restaurants that the Jung Family is treading on are absolutely powerless to stop it. The banks side with the richest customers, push the smaller ones out, and we see how hopeless the struggle is over and over again. First Grandma’s store fell, and now the remaining restaurants will be forced to immediately repay their loans, and when they can’t do so because the Jung Family takes so much of their business away, the banks will simply take their buildings away from them, and then the Jung Family succeeds in cornering the market again. It’s a vicious cycle, and one that exemplifies exactly what Dan-ah wants to escape from.

So for Kang-soo to use his own success to attempt to sway Dan-ah into staying is, I think, a bit disingenuous, and perhaps even selfish (is that a word I can use to describe Kang-soo without breaking the laws of the universe?). I don’t want this to come off as an attack on Kang-soo, because that’s certainly not the intention. It’s okay to be selfish sometimes, and especially for a guy like Kang-soo, who is so virtuous and upstanding in every ounce of his being. He deserves to get something that he wants every once in a while since he spends so much time looking after the needs of others around him, but I think trying to paint himself as someone who overcame Hell Joseon is a strange choice when we know that a large group of those very people who Kang-soo is trying to help are about to go under.

Which is why, I think, it’s more likely that Kang-soo is being disingenuous. He tried his best to woo Dan-ah simply with his own charm (and frankly how can a girl not swoon when this guy is out there doting on her), and when that failed to convince her not to leave the country, he realized that he wanted her to stay and took a new tack to get what he wants. Again, there is nothing wrong with this, and I don’t think it’s too out of character to think that Kang-soo would do something that indicates he isn’t just a pure idealist. He can have nice things too.

But enough with the serious talk because we need to discuss important matters here, like how adorable Ji-yoon and Jin-gyu are together. I love how their whole dynamic is completely flipped now, with Ji-yoon following Jin-gyu around (well, by proxy at least) and saying cheesy lines like the ones he used to throw at her to display affection, while he now just wants to be left alone but can’t get the thorn out of his side. He may be homeless now, but as Ji-yoon said, there’s definitely enough room for two people to live in her new place (*wink*). Go get him, girl!

I also find the antics of the rest of the Strongest Deliveryman crew to be some of the most enjoyable moments of the show. The Knucklehead Trio are the perfect foil for Gong-gi (who is such a lovable dork in just about every manner), and both Sung-jae and Min-chan balance out the buffoonery of their counterparts with more grounded perspectives, and they strike a great balance between seriousness and comedy throughout. But it’s great to know that when push comes to shove, they’ll be there for their comrades, like Gong-gi was when he fearlessly followed Kang-soo into a den of gangsters (seriously, that’s completely nuts!) to save Dan-ah, Soon-ae, and Chef Jang. If you’re going to try to tackle Hell Joseon, you’d be hard-pressed to find a better group of people to back you up.

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I totally love the second lead couple. I want to see how they form a part of this new company. After the Jung lady talking down on Oh JinGyu, I want him to actively participate in bringing her to the right track.
Also I find Dan ah's friend and the cute delivery guy adorable. I want to know what happened the day they first met.

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Also i find the background music -when they show JinGyu on streets- hilarious.

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hahahhahah it was!

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Loved that! I love how the show doesn't take itself too seriously and instead of making him look pitiful and all that, he elicits laughs instead. That is not to say I don't pity him because POOR BB but I'm excited how he'll bounce back from this and be a part of Strongest Deliveryman!

And yes, Min-chan and Yeon-ji are SO CUTE I WANNA SEE MORE OF THEM!!!!

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I sort of wish that the writer showed what Jin-gyu is planning to do with his current state of unemployment and homelessness.

But other than that, squeeing so hard over his scenes with Ji-yoon ? Can we get a "confession" scene from him next episode? ?

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So, Ji Yoon has finally moved on with her first love, and now she's focusing on her second love, Oh Jin Gyu!! Kyaaaaaaaa, I love how she's so determined on dating him. She's so sneaky when she's using the photographers that her father paid to keep track on what Jin Gyu's doing. LOL ?

Anyway, Kang Soo is so swoony in this episode. I bet Dan Ah is having a hard time to choose whether or not she wants to get out from Hell Joseon.

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Jin gyu and ji-yoon moving in together omo squeal!!!!!!!!!! Plz happen.

Kang-soo and dan-ah finally have their long OVERDUE first kiss.

I love this episode!

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When Ji-yoon mentioned that her room's big enough for two, I was squeeing so hard BECAUSE YES PLEASE

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Favorite moment of episode: Ji-Yoon crying when she finally found Jin-Gyu. She is a crybaby and all, but it must mean a lot for Jin-Gyu because there was finally someone who was actually worried for him.

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Oh, I agree... it was very touching. I feel she moved into liking him, at least "actively", very quick, but it fits somehow to her personality! LOL ?

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When Ji-yoon cried for him, I thought: oh he's gonna fall for her now. HIHIHI

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Ah,Kang Soo is sooo swoony i just can't...Loved the last part so much,so many emotions in his confession...

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No joke, I teared up when he started talking about the sexual harassment other women face in their line of work and how he recognizes that he could just up and move to a new neighborhood on a whim, but she would have to go through that entire hazing/objectifying process if she tried to do the same. Damn, Kang Soo. Way to recognize your privilege at exactly the right, sympathetic moment.

And I can't fault Kang Soo for asking Dan Ah to stay. Being stoic only gets you so far. He wants her to stay so he's asking her if she could stay, while in the same breath understanding how crappy her situation is. I'll have a problem with him if he tries to guilt-trip or manipulate her later, but for now I see nothing wrong with telling the girl you like that you like her so much you want her to stay.

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If he tries to guilt her into staying that would be so out of character I'd get mad and stay salty at the writers for eternity...

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Me too. I had tears with his whole speech. And I felt like it also diffused those who thought that Dan-ah is too gruff or something. It's because she had to be that way in order to survive.

Anyway, I agree with you. I don't fault him for asking her to stay because that's normal. To want that and to ask for that. It's not entirely being selfish because he's also providing her another possibility with life. But it's always Dan-ah's choice and I think Kang-soo understands that too. I just hope they don't make him out to badly by forcing Dan-ah not to move but I have faith in Kang-soo's character. Show Writers, don't you dare touch Kang-soo! HAHA

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OMG, can Kang Soo and that sleepy bank manager team up to help all the local restaurants get loans?? :D

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The laws of the kdramaverse pretty much require that.

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^What he said.
The laws of kdramaverse say that that is pretty much exactly what is going to happen. :P

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I think it's what will exactly going to happen next episodes.

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"The manager heads straight for Jin-gyu’s old notebook and finds all of his ideas for counter-strategies that he came up with prior to quitting."

^ I smell a misunderstanding on the horizon somewhere but hoping that I'm wrong (or if it really happens, hopefully their bromance will withstand the test once more)

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I hope it's a red herring and the manager will work together with Jin-Gyu. She seemed nice...

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She seems nice.. but you will never know.. she has ambitions too..

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I want Dan-ah to at least try to emigrate - it's all she's ever wanted, she should at least get the chance to experience it and see if it is any better. Hell Joseon is getting better, sure, but I want her to get her wish.

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Also, how is Ji-yoon under the impression that having Jin-gyu tailed is a swoon-worthy thing? I cringed for the boy. No-one can handle her.

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me too and then go back finding after realizing that even though there are better opportunities for her there, she's now confident enough to take hell joseon if it means she'll be with Kang-Soo. :)

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Sure. She can emigrate to America and become a recapper for Dramabeans :)

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LOL! ?

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I'm starting to suspect we're going to get a an open ending with her leaving to further her education, with an expectation of her return or a time skip like coffee prince

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Is the USA a better place than South Korea? Dan-ah, unless she has people there, will have to settle down by herself and find a job. I think it's not going to be that easy. To stay there for a long period of time, she'll need a full-time job. But she has no degree, (unless she plans on studying there first), with no real job experience, and her English is not all that fluent. The hell she faces in Korea, could also very well be in the US too. This may just be the case of the grass being greener on the other side, only to find that she has jumped out of the pan into the fire.

Having said this, I would like to comment that if more people were like Kang Soo and his band of brothers in Korea, it'll be certainly be less hellish and more heavenly.

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Maybe they will come up with the typical scene in an airport, (which I hope they won't, because I always hate those flight tickets being wasted!????), but also, maybe they come up with the typical travel separation, she would go, one or two years pass, KS is more successful than ever, and she will come back, also after having studied whatever, and he'll come back with her, of course. Happy end, in the last 5 minutes of the las episode!!! ??????

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<he is being a little bit shortsighted when it comes to convincing Dan-ah that the Hell Joseon she is trying to escape from is something that can be overcome without needing to flee

I agree to an extent in the sense of having your own company for a few weeks or even months pretty much says nothing (esp. because the drama didn't bother to explain some bits – they are all scraping by, but had money for newly painted scooters and company T-shirts and stuff?).

But the other thing is, isn't Dan-ah being short-sighted as well? She's got her count-down and she's been saving hard and studying English, but how does she even know she'll find something better than Hell Joseon? The drama just gives a vague dream, but little to hold on really. I suppose she's going to America (or some other English speaking country), but she's going to have to start at the bottom there (she has no uni education and her English is going to be at a level where she will find herself limited in job prospects as well – I've seen this with friends, who know English well, but have a foreign accent and a few sticky grammar mistakes they make, so they lose out against native speakers even if their university education/training/past work experience etc is better). How is her land of dreams not going to be another hell for her? It's just not clear to me at all. That's not even considering culture shock and all that (it sounds romantic to live abroad but actually it can be a lot harder than people imagine).

The drama has also never bothered to explain how Dan-ah is going to get where she's going – I'm talking in terms of visa and work permit.

I confess I've found the whole Dan-ah-is-leaving not very realistic from the start, and don't see it as a real conflict with something really at stake, because I already know she is not going (ok, I could see the writers send her abroad for a year by magical means – not explaining anything – and then have her return).

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Right? Dan-ah's been thinking of running away but not of really creating a new life.
I wish the writers had mentioned something easy like Dan-ah had a childhood friend that moved to whatever English speaking country and they keep in contact. That friend said she'd help her get a job and a room IF she pays for her plane ticket over. DONE guys...

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Good thinking. When do kdrama writers bother with such realistic details?

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In a previous ep. Kang Soo told her he had a lot of money saved for the company idea. I don't feel much about this conflict either, I mean it's not like she is giving up a scholarship or a job to stay with him. She may go, using those magic means, or not go, at any time. Like many others here, I care a lot more about second lead couple.

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<he had a lot of money saved for the company idea

I must have missed that – I'm sort of dipping in and out of this drama, because it doesn't really hit my spot (it's just lacking details that I need to really make me care about conflicts. And the mix between to super-ordinary and the chaebol/gangsta world is just off.).

<I mean it's not like she is giving up a scholarship or a job to stay with him. She may go, using those magic means, or not go, at any time.

Exactly. There's nothing at stake, it's a puff cloud dream and, as toramora says above, even just a few details more, would make it more real.

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>And the mix between to super-ordinary and the chaebol/gangsta world is just off

Agreed, this strange mix is what keeps SD from being much better because if it wasn't for them the story would have more time to develop the real characters and plot.

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My Childish Chaebol Couple ❤ LOL I'm excited for the next epi. ?

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It would (will?) Be so great to have them awkwardly live together although Jin gyu will probably have a hard time making Ji yoon keep her hands to herself. She's not one to sit and wait if she wants something

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Hehehe that's what we will get next epi! Hopefully ?

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Aha now we know why they prominently brought back that guy who got a 2nd delivery because he fell asleep before eating ... who is now a legit MONEY LENDER. He's gonna swoop in and take over the loans that the local shop people have to save them from Jung Family Conspiracy.

So far the delivery service company is running well but I think JinGyu might do a good job as an actual executive running it.

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It's a given, I love this drama for alot of reasons, but subtle it's not. I love all our couples, I want So-ae and Chef Jang to get on the same wavelength. They're alot like the older version of Dan-ah and Kang-soo

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" Jung Family Conspiracy" lol

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All I wanted to say is... so when will we get Jiyoon and Jingyu living together?
And that kiss tho??

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PLLEASSEE have them living together. Also yes kiss..sigh...at the very least some close up talking.

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I love that almost every character has a unique layered personality. Like the hometown friend of Kang Soo who is a bully but very. And Gong Gi who could be painted as embarrassing but is actually loyal and brave.

I would watch a drama about all the couples, especially the tertiary ones (yoga/graduate and the noodle/gangster couple) and I think that is a sign of great writing.

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This is why I fell so hard for this show right away. Unlike others who feel so much dichotomy with the actual plot and the subplots with the chaebols and gangsters, I actually like those too because we get to know our minor characters better. I love everyone in this show (I don't particularly like Hye-ran but I get her and that's more important to me: understanding a character versus liking) and I NEED MORE MIN-CHAN AND YEON-JI CUTENESS

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I don't think Kangsoo was being shortsighted. He was reframing an issue. Dan-ah is frustrated by the system, Kangsoo is trying to show her that the system can be subverted little by little. Many idealistic government workers start thinking like Dan-ah after a few years because they dream(ed) of big changes that led to big frustrations. Kangsoo is changing that thought and teaching her how to look at small things that lead to improvements in her immediate sphere of influence. It's a legit behavioral approach, I can't remember what it's called. But it's often given as advice to youngins

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And this show continues to go strong, putting out another week of amazing episodes. I'm so glad I've found one of those rare, never-a-bad-week shows, and I'm glad the recap is here! You're awesome, @regals!

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Move to the States, Dan ah and Kang Soo! We could use a delivery company like yours in San Francisco!

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LOL! ??

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I'm looking forward to seeing Kang-Soo, help the small business owners that are being pushed out by the bank per order from CEO Jung, now that Jin-Gyu will no longer be serving the Jung business, its Kang-Soo versus CEO Jung. *so excited!*

also don't you just love how quickly Ji Yoon overcome her first heartbreak and move on with Jin-Gyu? She's so adorable and now its her turn to do the wooing :)

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Hmm, how to explain this..... I don't think Kang Soo spoke with anything but 100 percent sincerity about the business/himself as CEO when he was asking Dan Ah to stay. He's the optimist type who likes to see the good side of even people who do wrong things, I think he really believes that the app and business can be successful and then Hell Joseon can be less hell for Dan Ah, and he wants her to stay for that (and also for him). His experience is that he tried to fight injustice and tried to fight a bigger business and had some success, so I can see how he might be hopeful. It's just that he doesn't know about the bank yer.

Whether her moving abroad plans are realistic is a different thing but for the story purpose, let's just take it as she has some kind of plan even if she wants to go to a new country and do delivery there too with the expectation that she can eventually do a different job or earn more money for a better life.

The second lead couple is cute but they just feel more like the usual bickering drama couple, it's not that interesting to me.

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<and do delivery there too with the expectation that she can eventually do a different job or earn more money for a better life

I thought delivery was what she was doing in Korea because it was the only way for her to get the money? That that was why she's the only delivery girl that ever lasted more than a few days? If she does that for several more years overseas, how would she have escaped her hell? In this sense, Kang Soo is right – she's already done years at the bottom and with his company there's a chance of rising up now. If she does the same job overseas, she's starting from the bottom again.

< let's just take it as she has some kind of plan

I guess she might have won a US greencard. I know there's no way she would be given a visa and work permit in the UK with where she is right now.

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Maybe it's not the US or UK but Australia, it's closer to Korea and if she studies and gets into college there she can work part time and earn money. She can still be a delivery girl but at least she can eventually get a degree and not have to do this for life. My cousin is doing the same thing, he works as a pizza delivery boy while he does his studies.

Who knows, maybe it's not even a big English speaking country but somewhere like Singapore? I hear about a Koreans coming to study in English there because it's cheaper and closer than going to US/UK etc

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How much does it cost to study for in Australia for a foreigner? Last time I checked it wasn't cheap at all. I doubt it's cheap in Singapore either, which is an expensive place.

The drama hasn't even indicated it's to study. Studies come with school terms and even if she has a scholarship those come with application deadlines. There's no indication of any of this (which would add some great tension to the narrative), so her whole dream is just totally wishy washy. It's not that we need lots of details, but at least something so it doesn't seem like her whole plan seems to be "hop on a plane and go to any English-speaking country the moment there's enough money because it's going to be paradise".

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Well, as a person who had emigrated myself, I have to agree with those who complain the show is not giving us enough details about how is she planning to go. But, on the other hand, I can perfectly imagine Dam ah, just saving money for plane ticket and the equivalent of half of a year of accommodations, and then thinking: "I will see when I am there". Because the feeling of despair, knowing you were born in the wrong place, you hate the system, you feel breathless in this hellish place, gives you the only hope, if you live in a place where the system is diferent, and you even speak the language, the rest would come up by itself. I thought like that when I was young like her (not that I an now extremely old, but, in my 20's, I remember thinking like that, I already knew English and I though if I could just go, I would find the way later, as if by magically breathing another air would make you find better chances, because those chances are there, but not here.
Me, I planned better and came to Germany to study my master (no scholarship), but I used to feel so desesperate, I could have go just to try my luck, had I not been accepted in college. So, I understand Dan ah perfectly. You just get to think that simply because it is another country, the same problems are not the same, and for instance you have new strengths to cope with them. In this regard, I feel her characterization is very real.

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Dan-ah might not even get on the plane, and even if she does, she's not going to make it through immigration when she arrives. Not in the UK, not in the US. Don't know about Australia, Singapore (etc) but I doubt they have an open door policy. Visa, work permits, proof of address, job offer + sponsor details etc. are all needed. Well, her grand plan might be to sneak in as a tourist (they still ask for an address) and overstay her visa... but it's just going to be another kind of hell.

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Should add though I don't have an issue with Da-nah's motivations per se... it's just the writing is surface level and it's obvious that the writer has never tried to live abroad nor researched it (not the first kdrama writer like that though).

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Haha @regals are we talking about capitalism now? Good observations, but kdramas have always been weaker in case of details right. Like how the best hit kept us playing till the end about hyunjae, and then suddenly voila, there's another hyunjae from an alternate world, which was completely irrational. At least, I am glad that Strong deliveryman has some positive concepts to begin with, like they accept the power of the conglomerates, and how they exploit the people who are trying to run original business, and for whom honesty and sharing count, rather than luring employees with the promise of money and promotions, [like what ji yoon's mom did with jin gyu].
I appreciate kang soo's perseverance and hard work though, and like how he is always positive about finding peace and courage in the world of hell joseon. In other words, difficulties don't daunt him or intimidate him, rather he would try to find out better solutions in the most crucial situations. So for that, have to say, I will give it to him for his enthusiasm and ability to believe in self and his friends. Start ups are especially hard and to invest all your savings in something new, is a brave thing to do. However, like I was saying, kdramas are weak in terms of details, like why all the restaurant owners would like to appoint boys from SDM, when it doesn't serve any benefits for them? Sure kang soo and the boys will have their business running, but does it help the restaurants in any way? Apart from the fact that they won't have any regular delivery staff to pay each month, there isn't any extra profit. Also, what is SDM's future prospects and how kang soo intend to pay all the employees is also something to think of. I can see that the numbers keep increasing, and while the business prospect is very idealistic, in the long run, is it feasible? The drama doesn't delve much in that department. Jdramas are best in these type of subject matters, like how my favorite drama 'rich man poor woman' dealt with the business factor was really interesting. I thought it would be a romance drama, but surprisingly we saw more than enough about how to run a business.
But regardless, I love the small dose of happiness from SDM. For the first time we are watching a drama based on the struggling group of the society. I would say it's a fresh start.. all in all.
Also on another note, I won't mind at all, if the story of kang soo and dan ah ends at ep 16, and the story of oh jin gyu and ji yoon starts from ep 17 lol. So much want to see them for 16 episodes X one whole hour. :'(

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Aww they had Ji-yoon stop Jin-gyu from eating leftover food just like Kang-soo stopped her.
YESS 2ND LOVE Jin-gyu! I love that what Ji-yoon learned from her first love was that she had to go for what she wanted ASAP and protect it from others...in typical Ji-yoon fashion this apparantly means surprise confession and professional stalking.
I like how Kang-soo acknowledge how difficult and challenging Dan-ah's life is being a woman in a not respected male dominated industry and the injustice of it all.

So...the new manager is stealing Jin-gyu's ideas?? Oh no lady I was wrong about you too.
Is Grandma Hyun-soo's paternal grandma? Not Kang-soo's grandmother because then she would know about him right?

Soon-ae’s ex-husband is awful...but why is he being introduced in episode 12? Oh it's because Chef Jang trying to clear Soon-ae's name annnd win her heart? How do Chef Jang and Soon-ae know each already? I'm not sure I care so much...wait will Soon-ae get all her money back and help Kang-soo & Dan-ah??

Side Note:
Great use of the back-hug show!
I love that this drama used a company retreat excuse to visit Min-chan hometown and give me a history lesson. YAY!
Kang-soo's suspicious face.<3
Kang-soo and Sung-jae's friendship story is adorable.
Ohhh Jin-yoon is moving into Dan-ah's building! Shenanigans!

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Are banks really like that in Korea? Besides the whole dump little customers as a favor for a big one thing, can they even call in loans immediately if the borrower hasn't defaulted?

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I don't think so. Bank loans are contracts and they are subject to certain conditions, dates, interest rates, etc... even if the president of the bank says out of a whim, he wants X person to pay him out of the terms of the loan legalities, he could be sued.
I am sure they could push or even threat a person or business into paying them immediately and get them out of business, but they cant do that with many people, let alone at the same time. They would be collectively sued, cause there is always someone smart in the group.
In this case, it is the licence the writer is taking for plot advancement ???. We will have to let it pas, because the writer is doing well in almost everything else... ha ha h a

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If granny really is (as I assume) Kang-soo's mom's mother, shouldn't granny know about her daughter's first marriage and eldest son? Should she maybe be starting to figure things out after Kang-soo his mom's place so suddenly?

And will we ever find out what happened to the money mom took?

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I thought grandma might be Hyun-soo's paternal grandmother.
I'm not sure why Kang-soo's mom took the money...maybe she ran off with Hyun-soo father and they needed start up money?

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Yeah otherwise how would she not know Kang soo, I'm with Kang -Soo on this one - no forgiveness forthcoming, A letter a call, something, it sounds like Kang-soo's father was as nice as Kang Soo, so I cannot come up with any reason to completely cut off contact.

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LOL "important matters" indeed. I am so amazed at how far Ji Yoon has come, she started out as a lost clueless kitten and now she ready to take charge of another person and be the breadmaker of their potential household to boot. I can bet my boots his dad is going to sob hard when he hears his little kitty has grown up so much. some people are unable to do that until they are 50.

I was quite shocked that the restaurant manager took Jin Gyus´ notes. People who steal others´ideas and take credit are the ultimate scumbags, but I didn´t expect that of her. she seemed nice before.

this drama is super weird with going gangster movie cliche on one hand and then being hyperrealistic with the former shooting grounds. I do understand Dan-Ah somewhat because the fear that all your efforts eventually fail and everything gets taken away, well, she is witnessing it with the small family businesses being devoured. is there anything people like them can do? but even if it is a capitalist society, they should take advantage of the new opportunities that fast-moving world offers every day. people who can manouver modern trends and possibilities are the winners - I wish they went that direction. cause Jung Family, albeit huge, is stagnated and conservative. they are definitely not "riding the wave"

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Yay show. Thank you for giving me Jingyu and Jiyoon. I really love these two and I hope they'll start living together. Cohabitation has been done many times in kdramaland but knowing Jiyoon she'll probably up the ante to the nth level so please show, make this happen. I love this show and all the characters but I'm loving the secondary characters more. I understand Dan-ah and Kangsoo but somehow their journey/story doesn't touch me as much as the others. I cried with Minchan a few episodes back when he was told why he can't get a job.

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I love Kang-soo and Dan-ah but I feel like I already know their stories or because I know their stories will be given to us which is why I implore all the stars to gimme more of the other characters.. I'm loving the second lead couple more and I love seeing the other characters get screentime and character depth. I was also tearing up at that part with Min-chan and I just wanted to hug bb. And then we saw how he was still appropriate and polite with Yeon-ji even if, I dunno, if a lesser person were in his position, he'd more or less take advantage of Yeon-ji. Gah, that's why I love him so much and wish he had more screentime!

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Jin-gyu needs to move into Ji-yoon's room ASAP. Imagine how her parents would react. Mum would probably flip out and Dad would kill him. Either way he's so dead *giggles*. But then I still want this so Ji-yoon can come and protect him, that'll be a good reversal. We got a confession from Ji-yoon so this week I'm waiting for signs that Jin-gyu has completely moved on from Dan-ah, and that he'll spout more cheesy lines in Ji-yoon's directions, this time sincerely.

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Oh ohhhh ohhhhh This episode is getting more comments than usual. Can it be more beanies are finally paying attention and watching our little realistic optimistic turf-war (ish) beautiful show? ☺??

I hope so.

Anyway, my contribution:

This has been the most short easy resolved gangster conflict I have seen in a drama in years. Even in "modern farmers" and "stars falling from the sky" the gansters kidnapping and rescue took longer. But I don't complain. I felt it was too easy to be believable and for instance, it kind of dismatch with the realistic atmosphere of the show, but we'll, I suppose I have to forgive them because we had to move to "more important matters"! He he ?

Keep on loving the show. All the characters... the pace... some of the messages.

I love it. Keep it up, show! And don't ruin our OTP personalities, and don't bring up a stupid scene in an airport! Come on, you are smart, you can solve Dan ah's conflict in a smart cute touching way! Fighting!

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As for Kang Soo persuading Dan-ah to stay-
- disillusionment in your circumstance and your country can be quite real actually - resulting in the desire to migrate/run away/look for better horizons - whatever you want to call it. I myself have had such feelings before and even went so far as to put in the papers. As to how I was gonna live - that was something I thought that I would work out once I got there!! (I was young then!) So Dan-ah's need to get out of Hell Joseon is very real from her perspective, what she's lived through and how she's lived - without familial support etc.

- Kang Soo's approach, I feel, is for Dan-ah to get a different perspective on how things could change with a newfound "family", purpose and maybe even strategy and goal. I think he means to give her hope - in that there is hope for change. In every circumstance there is always a need to strive for what you want. To fight for your rights and so on. Jin Gyu - being born into wealth - did not guarantee self worth nor confidence and purpose. He has his personal Hell Joseon to deal with.

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"Jin Gyu - being born into wealth - did not guarantee self worth nor confidence and purpose".
Oh, wow, wow....wow.... how I love your comment! It is so true! It is a matter of perspective... KS comes from poor family but developed a purpose in life: to become a good person, even if that takes you to prison! And in the meantime he made over 300 friends! ?
Jin gyu wanted to kill himself because his life had no purpose and he knew it! He had no friends to back him up when he was thrown away from his family or now that he quitted his job. If I keep comparing I will feel very sorry for him. But only to highlight my point: it is not the money, but your self esteem, your guts and your determination what decides how you live your life and how happy and satisfied you are wherever you live. He'll Joseon or South America inclusive.
Of course, sadly those element not always guarantee success in the way the world would interpret it, but it can give anyone a clean conscience and a good sense of identity. That is also success! To be able to treasure life, and have friends and love, that is what I call the best success ever! ? and I am not even talking about romantic love....for me family and friends are enough. ...
I wish I could have had that when I was 25. In many aspects my life would have been better.

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I absolutely agree, I love all the SD members, all adorable in their own way.

Short comment because school life is drowning me, but I came here to say during the scenes when Soon-ae was following Chef, I was really thinking very hard to myself "I REALLY hope she's wearing sensible shoes!!" and she was, thank goodness. Some sort of reality in this show, haha.

And the last scene with the KISS!!! Omo. I think it is possible that Dan-ah stays behind. The reason why SK was more and more of a Hell Joseon to her was not just the rich getting richer aspect, but also the getting getting touched etc by men, so hopefully with Kang-soo around she can relax more and see that SK isn't as hellish.

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Anyone else notice the marijuana leaf on Jin-Gyu's tie? lol

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The scene that I replayed most for this ep is not the kiss but the scene around the 12th minute when DA and KS did the hand action promise thing, and him leaning against the pillar while seeing her off... just love the look on his face and the eyes! Well, the kiss was good too :)

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It was cute! Dan-ah did something Kang-soo thought was childish. :)
His gazes are the BEST.

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This show never fails to amaze me with every episode!! Each new episode are better than the last. The pace, character developments and the couples, just wow..
Best scenes for me : The long OVERDUE 1st Kiss of Kang Soo and Dan Ah. And how can i not squeee with this adorable and clueless chaebols aka Jin gyu and Ji Yoon..
I like the idea of Jin gyu and Ji Yoon living together.. hahaha.. oh girl, you are clueless no more. Love yah..

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Good lord, I just finished all 12 episodes in 3 days and WHY DID IT TAKE ME SO LONG TO WATCH THIS SHOW? WHY?

Instead of this super-happy feeling I have these past three days, I could have had that for the past six weeks! I am berating myself for this fault in judgment.

But anyway, at least, I'M FINALLY HERE. And I really raced to finish the 12th episode just so I can comment here. I think everyone has already said what I planned on saying and I also commented and concurred with a lot of people in the comments section so I don't have anymore to say.

(Actually I have lots but then it'd all be incoherent squealing. Haha!)

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